Motivation Articles

3 Simple Ways to Build Consistency

Because Consistency is the Key to Success!

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By Dean Anderson, Fitness & Behavior Expert         
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Because life is unpredictable and complicated, you need to have plan B ready—even before you actually need it. Plan B is an alternative way to stay consistent with your goals when your regular routine (or something else) doesn’t work out as planned. Obviously, you can’t foresee every single problem that might come up. But most of the time, the things that get in your way are things that happen fairly often—like kids getting sick, extra hours at work, or days when you just don’t feel very energetic. Those surprises won't throw you off track if you plan ahead. For example, have a friend or family member lined up to stay with your kids so you can make it to the gym; stock your freezer with some healthy meals when you're short on time; stash your exercise clothes at the office for a quick workout when you can't get away.

Put a little time into identifying the most common problems that disrupt your healthy routine, and plan (in advance) what you can do to handle these problems without sacrificing your diet and exercise routine. Then all you’ll have to do is put your plan B into action.


Following these three simple rules will help you overcome some common obstacles while building the momentum you need to stay consistent. At the very least, you’ll be able to take all those lemons that life hands you, and make some good (and diet-friendly) lemonade out of them.
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About The Author

Dean Anderson Dean Anderson
Dean Anderson has master's degrees in human services (behavioral psychology/stress management) and liberal studies. His interest in healthy living began at the age of 50 when he confronted his own morbid obesity and health issues. He joined SparkPeople and lost 150 pounds and regained his health. Dean has earned a personal training certification from ACE and received training as a lifestyle and weight management consultant. See all of Dean's articles.

Member Comments

  • Great article with real and helpful actions to take. I like that it was problem solving rather than judging. I struggle with Consistency and think this will help. Thank you! - 1/14/2016 10:25:25 AM
  • Sometimes I feel stuck and so I don't do anything. The idea that this just means that I want two different and opposing things - not that I am lazy, or unmotivated, or don't know what to do - really hit home for me. - 1/13/2016 6:41:14 PM
  • FULLYKAT
    I am feeling very motivated and supported by the 30 day checkins. - 1/13/2016 11:54:33 AM
  • KLEMIE
    This article came at the right time. I'm doing this with my daughter, who lives in another state. We keep each other motivated. She keeps me going. - 1/13/2016 11:19:23 AM
  • VAGIRL4
    This makes since. Now that I have these tools I can get moving like I should be. - 1/13/2016 10:24:02 AM
  • I never thought about me saying that "I'm not motivated" was just an excuse, but it's so true! I need to remember this article for the next time I'm not wanting to do something and realize that I have a choice, either the healthy choice, or the unhealthy one! - 1/2/2016 8:05:22 PM
  • Love that this reminded me that I have a choice. It i not lack of will power or motivation it i simply wanting one thing more than another at that moment. - 10/9/2015 8:39:07 AM
  • Need to have a plan B - some mornings I am just not motivated unless I have some place to go. - 10/8/2015 6:56:24 PM
  • HAIRYPRARIE
    Great article. Thank you. - 9/20/2015 8:17:09 PM
  • NONY1951
    very interesting articles and SPOT ON! - 7/22/2015 9:20:09 AM
  • Will work on a plan b, great tip thank you. - 5/25/2015 12:41:11 AM
  • Thank you--- Thank you, Coach Dean Anderson, for all your guidance here! - 1/8/2015 4:19:14 PM
  • Great article! I have been very inconsistent over the past few months and need to re-focus on consistency. I'll definitely try all of these, especially plan B with long work hours ahead.

    Thank you! - 12/29/2014 7:01:22 AM
  • I have, during an emotionally grueling triathlon, tried to convince myself I really wanted to go back to being the fat lady who just rides her bike. Fortunately, my Inner Coach took over and wouldn't let that part of me win. - 11/4/2014 2:05:50 PM
  • What a great article! Thank you, Dean! :) I have struggled doing that 10-minute exercise a day 5 days a week challenge and I couldn't figure out why... I understand now that it might have been too much at the time. I like the "Build Momentum One Step at the Time" section of the article. I think it suits me better than starting 5 days a week "cold turkey". - 10/24/2014 12:25:24 PM

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